Israel’s war against Hamas terrorists in Gaza has the potential to impact President Joe Biden’s chances of winning the 2024 general election. With the recent announcement from Robert Kennedy Jr. that he will be running as an independent candidate, Biden already faces the challenge of competing against multiple independent challengers who could potentially draw away progressive votes in a tight rematch with former President Donald Trump. Biden’s allies have been working on a multimillion-dollar strategy to counter these outside candidates, but the conflict in Gaza has brought to the surface divisions within the Democratic Party.
While Biden has expressed his support for Israel and condemned Hamas’s terrorist attacks, not all Democratic lawmakers have done the same. Representatives Rashida Tlaib and Cori Bush have both criticized the Israeli government, with Tlaib going so far as to describe it as practicing “apartheid.” These statements have drawn pushback from both Democrats and Republicans and highlight the differing views within the party on how to handle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Israel war shines a light on cracks in the Biden coalition https://t.co/BTY94r3v95
— Mr. Nashville Talks (@MrNashshow) October 13, 2023
Even more concerning for Biden is the response from the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), a group closely associated with progressive lawmakers like Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. A pro-Palestinian rally organized by the DSA was criticized for its antisemitic nature, with some protesters carrying signs with swastikas and calling for the end of Israel. Although the DSA later apologized, the incident further highlights the divisions within the Democratic Party.
Despite these divisions, Biden has been balancing his empathy for the Palestinian people with his support for Israel. He has acknowledged the use of Palestinians as human shields by Hamas and has called on Israel to operate within the international laws of war to limit casualties among the Palestinian people. Biden’s statements following the attacks have overwhelmingly favored Israel’s right to defend its citizens.
In conclusion, the conflict in Gaza has not only highlighted divisions within the Democratic Party but also poses a potential challenge for Biden in the 2024 general election. With multiple independent challengers and differing views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict within his own party, Biden will need to navigate these challenges carefully to maintain support and secure his reelection.